The European Federation of Psychology Students’ Associations (EFPSA) was established in 1987, at the first International Congress of Psychology Students in Portugal. EFPSA represents a highly diverse network of psychology students working on a voluntary basis by and for psychology students of Europe. The Federation currently consists of 33 psychology Member Organisations and three Observer Organisations.
Currently EFPSA organises eleven events across Europe. Additionally, EFPSA also hosts several online resources and runs its own training service, a research programme, a fully-reviewed, open-access Journal, facilitates studying, working and travelling abroad and makes a positive impact on society through social impact campaigns. Altogether EFPSA has positioned itself to provide psychology students with unique and exciting opportunities for academic, professional and personal development. Stimulated by its mission, vision and values, EFPSA continues to expand its presence and visibility within student communities, refine its activities and develop an unrivalled portfolio of opportunities and membership for European psychology students.
At the heart of all EFPSA activities are four core goals:
- To serve psychology students
- To contribute to society
- To improve psychology
- To link professionals, academics and students
EFPSA Strategic Planning 2018-2022
“Strategic planning – developing and improving the ethos and plans of our activities and events, whilst contributing to the future of EFPSA in a positive manner”
EFPSA introduced a formalised strategic planning to ensure long-term sustainability and development of our activities. In addition to consideration of developing existing EFPSA activities, events and services, we also sought to foster new opportunities and prospects for growth of EFPSA.
The strategic plan was established in a document entitled ‘EFPSA Strategic Planning’. A principal aim of the initiative was to collate and organise and long-term objectives of the organisation, and in doing-so, overcome inherent difficulties posed by one-year mandates.
The strategic plan took the four core goals of EFPSA (to serve psychology students; to link professionals, academics & students; to improve psychology; and to contribute to society) and used them to formulate objectives with measurable outcomes. These objectives were set against a timeline of five years.
We considered the first year of the plan to be especially important in respect to it being one of setting foundations and an encouraging course of development for EFPSA in the coming years.
Accomplishments so far
At the end of each year, we take time to review our progress of the mandate in relation to the strategic plan and compile a Strategic Review. Here we account for accomplishments, acknowledge unfulfilled objectives, and leave notes for our successors such that they may continue working towards a sustainable and bright future for EFPSA.
We welcome anyone interested in the recent development and future of EFPSA to download these documents and have a read. If you have questions or comments, please direct them to the Secretary General (email@example.com).
Our mission is to bring psychology students together on a European level to enrich their concept and application of psychology and encourage skill development in order to contribute to the improvement of the field; have a positive impact on society and its perception of psychology; support scientific and social interaction and cultural exchange between psychology students, academics and professionals.
How do we implement this? By consistently developing our services, events and the quality of interaction between European psychology students and their national, regional and local associations, we create an encouraging environment for psychology as a professional and scientific field in Europe.
Our vision is to have a psychologically aware society where the misconceptions that surround it are diminished in order to enhance general well-being; to provide services and events that accommodate the vast expanse of needs of psychology students to develop themselves professionally and reach interconnectedness across all of Europe.
As an organisation, to be connected both internally and externally, within the EFPSA working community and with organisations who share a similar mission and values
To have an integral, coherent and consistent approach to all aspects of our operations
To accept the differences; to respect and welcome them as valuable assets
To have courage in adversity and unforeseen circumstances
The beginning (1987 - 1991)
EFPSA was founded in April 1987, when students from the University of Lisbon (Portugal) invited psychology students from all over Europe to a meeting. This was a very momentous occasion, where psychology students from eight European countries formed the European Federation of Psychology Students’ Associations.
The basic outlines of this Federation were transformed into formal statutes during the second meeting in Liege (Belgium) in April 1988. At the same time, the first long term project of EFPSA, the Europsycho-database on education and exchange, began. In January 1989, EFPSA was registered as an international association according to the Belgian law. During the third General Assembly in April 1989 in Lund (Sweden) the Federation developed its structure and started to fill this structure with contents. Also in 1989, the first meeting of the Executive Board (EB) was held in between two annual Congresses and took place in Berlin. This ensured more continuous work during the whole year and better preparation of the General Assembly.
The collaboration with the European Federation of Psychologists’ Associations (EFPA) started in July 1991 in Amsterdam (The Netherlands). Since 2001, EFPSA has been an affiliate member of EFPA.
After EFPSA’s participation in the first European student conference, which brought together approximately 500 students from a number of disciplines, in Liege (Belgium) in November 1990, a lot of new contacts were made, especially with Eastern European countries. During the fifth General Assembly in April 1991 in Geneva (Switzerland) EFPSA grew to 11 members, and the first delegation from Eastern Europe was welcomed.
The early development (1993 - 1996)
In this year the idea of permanent working groups (called ‘Task Forces’) came up to enable more efficient work on projects such as Europsycho, Erasmus, the European journal Psyscriptum, participation in conferences, educational matters etc. Over the next five annual congresses, held in Bergen, Norway (1992), Amsterdam, The Netherlands (1993), Lancaster, UK (1994), Pula, Croatia (1995) and Jyväskylä, Finland (1996), EFPSA developed further. As well as the annual congresses, several other events such as summer schools and seminars (e.g. Portugal, Croatia, Germany) became a part of EFPSA’s activities.
Since its foundation, EFPSA has grown to be a large European organisation with numerous European-wide events successfully organised. The first EFPSA Congress happened in Portugal and we celebrated our 30th anniversary back in the city of Lisbon where it all started.
The online growth (2010 - now)
In these years, EFPSA has grown rapidly. With an EFPSA Working Community of over 100 people, the core goals of EFPSA can be achieved at a faster rate and a bigger scale. This is manifested in the amount of following on EFPSA's social media accounts in 2019.
- Facebook: 28000+ likes
- Instagram: 2300+ followers
- LinkedIn: 3700+ followers
- Twitter: 1300+ followers
Besides our online presence, our physical presence has grown at the annual EFPSA Congresses. The EFPSA Congress has been growing in size allowing for more and more students, professionals and academics to connect with each other. At the 24th EFPSA Congress (2010 - The Netherlands) gathered around 200 participants. At the 28th EFPSA Congress (2014 - Czech Republic), EFPSA welcomed around 300 participants. At the 31st EFPSA Congress (2017 - Azerbaijan), EFPSA welcomed 350 participants. At the 35th EFPSA Congress (2021 - the Netherlands), EFPSA will welcome 400 participants to exchange knowledge, cultures and practices.
Unfortunately, during the world wide pandemic in the spring of 2020, the 34th EFPSA Congress could not take place in Ireland. The General Assemblies were held virtually to maintain a normal transition of the mandate.
Below is a list of where each annual EFPSA Congress has taken place over the last 30 years:
EFPSA Congress History
Where to begin
Are you a psychology student studying in Europe? Do you identify with EFPSAs mission, vision and values? Do you want to know how you can get involved in the federation? If so, you are in the right place!
By being part of EFPSA you will get the opportunity to form part of a community that invests in the growth and development of each individual, whilst contributing to a bigger picture collectively. EFPSA also provides you with the opportunity to maximise your potential by presenting you with various opportunities, allowing room for learning and development.
If you are keen on becoming a part of EFPSA, but are unsure of where to begin, below you will find lots of information about EFPSAs activities and information about how you can both benefit and contribute to EFPSA.
EFPSA’s Events and Services
There are many ways in which you may become involved. To begin with, you may apply to participate in one of our events. We offer psychology students the opportunity to participate in various events ranging from summer schools to congresses. Further information about each of these events can be found in the Events menu above.
When our applications open, we release a ‘call for participants’ which we advertise on our website and social media (facebook, instagram) so make sure to keep an eye on these pages for more information. Many of our MRs will also advertise these in their universities too!
EFPSA also offers students the opportunity to gain experience in publishing their research, through submission of articles in our open access, peer-reviewed Journal of European Psychology Students (JEPS). Through the process of submission, students may get the opportunity to share their research worldwide while also developing their scientific skills. JEPS is an ideal place to begin your journey into the world of publications, and you will receive feedback on your work at each stage. The JEPS bulletin is a blog where you can read all about scientific research and interviews with various professionals and academics in the field of psychology and its related disciplines.
If you have graduated from a trainers’ course such as the TtT and have delivered over 10 hours of training, you may apply to be a part of the EFPSA trainers’ pool and contribute to development of the EFPSA community.
If you have experienced studying in a foreign country, then you can also contribute to EFPSA’s Study and Travel Abroad database by sending us your experience stories. You can also use the platform to find information about courses in the country/region of our member organisations. The Study and Travel Abroad service also offers students the opportunity to travel without worrying about accommodation costs while also interacting with international psychology students.
And finally, if you wish to join the working community of dedicated EFPSA volunteers then read on!
Every year we have our Research Summer School (RRS) where 36 participants, together with their supervisors, plan and conduct research in the psychology field. They create a plan and start working on their research, and then present their work at our annual congress. The theme of RSS is different each year but we offer 6 research titles, so everyone can find something for themselves. RSS is a great opportunity to gain more knowledge about research, especially if you are interested in doing a PhD.
Do you want to make an impact in society? Do you want to educate people on the topic of mental illnesses and fight the stigma? Do you want to help lessen the discrimination? Then join one of our campaigns.
The goal of Mind the Mind campaign is to fight the stigma about mental illnesses. The workshops are designed for people from 14 years to adults and we discuss most common mental illnesses including depression, anxiety, eating disorders, etc.
The goal of Better Together campaign is to lessen the discrimination and educate about different discriminations that people experience, including discirmination against race, religon, gender, sexual identity and orientation, dissability dicsrimination and more. The campaign consists of a cycle of 5 workshops.
Call for new Local Coordinators for Mind the Mind, and Better Together campaigns, open between August and September each year. For more information, you can contact our social impact initiative coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Joining the Executive Board
If you are interested in joining the EFPSA community as a member of one of our teams, there is a very wide selection of positions available within the Executive Board. Whether you are interested in developing one of our online services, contributing to the running of the journal, becoming an EFPSA Trainer, contributing to the organisation and hosting of one of our events, or taking responsibility for entire divisions of EFPSA as a member of the Board, there is definitely something for everyone within the Executive Board. You can learn more about these roles and what is involved in each position by reading the Role Description documents, available here.
The vast majority of positions operate on a one year mandate, meaning that individuals take up their position at the annual Congress for one year, and hand over to their successor at the subsequent Congress. Calls for the Board and Executive Board positions are usually launched between the end of March and the beginning of April. The application process differs slightly depending on the role you are applying for, however these are always announced very clearly.
If you apply for a position within the Board, you must submit an application form and up to date CV to the Immediate Past President of EFPSA before the Congress. All applications are reviewed by the Member Representatives prior to the General Assembly which takes place on the first day of the Congress. At this General Assembly, all of the applicants are formally presented and make a short presentation. The Member Representatives then vote on all the applications and the results are then announced. The successful candidates begin their work immediately - and one of their first tasks is interviewing and selecting the new Executive Board.
There are many Executive Board positions. If you want to apply for a coordinator position in the Executive Board, you must submit your application form before the Congress. However, all other Executive Board positions may be applied for during the Congress itself, with the deadline for applications typically on the second day of the event. This is particularly useful, as you have an opportunity to discuss the position with the member of the current team. While none of these applicants make presentations at the General Assembly, the newly elected Board interviews all applicants on an individual basis. The Board then selects the Coordinators of each team. Finally, the Board responsible and the Coordinator then select the members for each team. The decisions of these interviews are announced the next morning – which is an exciting moment that marks the introduction of a complete Executive Board for that mandate.
Representation of national student associations at a European level
If you are an active student within your national psychology student association or if you wish to be, becoming a Member Representative may be the perfect role for you! The Member Representatives are the decision making body of EFPSA and are nominated to their role within their own associations. If you are interested in becoming a Member Representative, then you can contact your Member Organisation using the contact information available from the EFPSA Members page.
Naturally, all members of EFPSA perform very different tasks. If after reading the respective pages and role description documents you are left with questions unanswered or any queries please do not hesitate to contact us using the contact form below.
Frequently Asked Questions
EFPSA does not provide individual memberships. Members of EFPSA are national, local and regional psychology students’ associations from European countries/regions; however, only one national or regional organisation, or two local organisations, per country/region can hold the status of a member within the Federation. These national, local and regional associations are known as Member Organisations (MOs).
Organisations from countries recognised by the Council of Europe are eligible to apply as members of EFPSA. Organisations from countries that are not recognised by the Council of Europe can be taken into consideration as Regional Members.
EFPSA is currently constituted by 33 psychology students’ organisations from 33 different European countries and regions. In the Members page on our website, you can find information about each of the current active member organisations that constitute EFPSA.
Full membership to the Federation may be acquired and recognised on two equal tiers:
- Member Organisation operating on a national platform (i.e. National Member Organisations)
- Member Organisation operating on a regional platform (i.e. Regional Member Organisations)
Alternatively, organisations may hold membership within either tier as a Local Member Organisation.
A National Member Organisation must be legally registered in a European state and is able to demonstrate that the organisation represents psychology students from that country and that its activities are open to psychology students of all universities within that country.
The status of Local Organisations allows for membership of an organisation that does not claim to operate at the National or Regional level; instead, the organisation only represents the psychology students of one city/town or university within that country.
Regardless of tier, in almost all circumstances, all Member Organisations will be respected and handled on equal terms. The one main difference is that delegates of National/Regional Member Organisations currently hold two votes to cast on proposals while delegates of Local Member Organisations hold one vote to cast on proposals.
- For individuals
There are many ways in which psychology students may get involved in EFPSA. To begin with, one can apply to one of our Events as a participant. For example each year we have a Congress which is our biggest event and it marks the beginning of the new mandate. Each year we also have events such as EFPSA Academy, EFPSA Research Summer School, EFPSA Train the Trainers where students can become certified trainers, and every second year we have EFPSA Conference. You can also apply as an Organising Committee of EFPSA events and host them in your country, or organise EFPSA cultural exchanges with other countries. To find more about our events please visit our website or contact us via email@example.com.
There are other ways students can join us; you can become a volunteer for one of our campaigns “Mind the Mind” or “Better together”, or a Local Coordinator who oversees the volunteers. If you are interested in research you can apply as a participant of the EFPSA Research Programme where you will conduct multicultural research in a supervised team, and you can also become the Ambassador of our journal - Journal of European Psychology Students. Holding most of these positions means that you are automatically part of EFPSA Supporting Community (check more details here). If you want to contribute more, you can always apply for different positions in our Working Community. We have six different offices you can work in; EFPSA Office, External Relations Office, Events Office, Finance Office, Members Office and Marketing Office. We also have five teams who work on our services; Social Impact Initiative, Study and Travel Abroad, Training Office, Research Programme and Journal of European Psychology Students. You can apply for different positions within these teams. To find more information about positions please visit https://www.efpsa.org/efpsa-working-community/#executive-board-offices or contact us directly.
This means that each psychology student (we accept students who graduated in the past 2 years) whose country is a member of EFPSA can apply to attend our events, become a volunteer for our campaigns, become part of our Supporting Community or apply for different positions in our Working Community.
- For Organisations
Before becoming members of EFPSA, psychology students’ organisations or associations go through the following process. Initially, the organisation or association must become an Observer Organisation; this allows the organisation to learn more about EFPSA and become familiar with the structure, working practices and current state of the Federation. After completing one year under the observer status, the organisation may then apply to become a member of EFPSA.
Applications for membership must be submitted to the Secretary General at least 45 days before the first General Assembly of the annual Congress. Applications can only be taken into consideration after an organisation has been an Observer Organisation for a period of at least one year. The application is forwarded to EFPSA’s Member Representatives for consideration. At the General Assembly, a presentation is delivered by the applying organisation, after which the application is voted upon by the General Assembly and must be accepted by two thirds (2/3) of its delegates.
For more information and support please contact our Member Observer Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org. EFPSA can help provide you with support in organising your National, Regional or Local organisation and with applying for EFPSA membership. A document with membership guidelines is available in the Documents section on our website.
There are many ways in which psychology students may get involved in EFPSA. To begin with, one can apply to one of our Events as a participant – information about registration for these Events can be found on the respective webpages on the EFPSA website. These opportunities are advertised, as ‘Calls for Participants,’ through our website, on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram or Twitter. Aside from Event participation, we also advertise Calls, through the previously mentioned platforms, to organise various EFPSA Events and campaigns. Additionally, our Services provide another way through which students may get involved. This can be done by reading the JEPS Bulletin or articles published in the Journal itself, and making use of our Study and Travel Abroad resource, individuals may be interested in contributing to EFPSA as a volunteer in Executive Board or applying to host one of our events. Individuals may also be interested in representing students from their respective Member Organisation as the Member Representative; in order to do this the respective Member Organisation can be contacted for more information.
If you are interested in joining the EFPSA Working Community as a member of one of our teams, there is a very wide selection of positions available within the Executive Board. Whether you are interested in developing one of our online Services, contributing to the running of the Journal, becoming an EFPSA Trainer, organising and hosting one of our Events, or working within one of the Offices running the organisation; there’s something for everyone within the Executive Board. You can learn more about the roles and duties of each position by reading the Role Description documents, available here.
The vast majority of positions operate on a one-year mandate, meaning that individuals take up their position at the annual Congress and hand it over to their successor one year later at the subsequent Congress. Please note that between the end of March and the beginning of April, we launch a series of Calls for these Executive Board positions. The application process differs slightly depending on the exact role you apply for but this information is clearly provided and can always be obtained from the members of the Board.
The Call for Executive Board Coordinators, Responsible and Team Members typically closes on the second day of the Congress. While none of these applicants make presentations at the General Assembly, the newly elected Board interviews all applicants. The Board then selects the Coordinators who select the members for their team along with the Board. The outcomes are announced the morning after the interviews – an exciting moment marking the introduction of a complete Executive Board embarking on their new mandate.
If you wish to apply for a position within the Board, you need to be a member of the working community (either as a part of the Executive Board, or a Member Representative). You will be required to send in your application form, along with a Curriculum Vitae at least 45 days before the Annual Congress to the Immediate Past President. The Call for applications to the Board opens approximately two months before the annual Congress.
All applications are reviewed by the Member Representatives prior to candidates being formally presented to the EFPSA General Assembly on the first day of the Congress, where short 5-minute presentations are made by all Board candidates. The Member Representatives then vote on all candidates at the General Assembly, after which the votes are counted and the results are announced during that same session of the General Assembly. Successful candidates immediately assume their responsibilities. Their first task is the selection of all other Executive Board positions, as described above.
The mandate officially opens upon election of the new Board at the second session of the General Assembly.
The Member Representative receives all of the applications submitted by the students from their respective Member Organisation. The Member Representative then decides upon the participants. This should be done by following a set of guidelines known as the Selection Criteria, which can be found within the EFPSA Congress Participant Selection Guide. When selecting participants, the Member Representatives consider the motivation behind the application, the educational background, interest in holding a presentation or a workshop at the Congress, interest in applying for a position within the Executive Board along with the personal interest and requirements of the Member Organisation.
There are Events that have only two basic requirements (for applicants to be psychology students or within two years of graduation, and for the student organisation to be a member of EFPSA), however, some of our Events require earlier enrollment in some programmes, previous knowledge or having a position within the organisation.
Graduates of the European Summer School are enrolled into the Junior Researcher Programme, which involves attending the JRP Conference.
For the Joint Executive Board & Member Representatives Meeting you have to be a part of the EFPSA Working Community (as a Member Representative or having a position within the Executive Board or the Board of Management).
EFPSA Academy is an Event aimed for volunteers working in different Non-governmental organisations so the requirements are to be a student (regardless of the academic level) and to be involved in a NGO.
In order to apply for the Trainers’ Conference, one must be in possession of a trainer’s degree. For the Train Advanced Trainers, you should meet the previous requirement and have completed at least 30 hours of training. These two Events are open to externals, meaning that you do not need to be a psychology student to apply.
Anyone can attend, organise and/or is encouraged to participate in EFPSA Day – a one-day Event designed to promote EFPSA across Europe simultaneously, on the same day.
Have you been officially been part of EFPSA? And are you not going to continue within EFPSA anymore? No problem! Stay in touch with others like you students or professionals in different branches of Psychology who used to volunteer for EFPSA? We are pleased to invite you to the official registration for Alumni Network members! This Form will be used for Alumni to continuously register themselves (until further development on a different platform for Alumni). The Alumni Board will check your application and confirm you by sending you a registration number. With this number you will be able to register for the yearly EFPSA Congress as an Alumni.
It depends. Students who graduated in psychology within two years (regardless of the academic level) are eligible to apply for any position within the Working Community or as participants to Events. During the application process, applicants are required to send a proof of studies stating in which year of study they were or their date of graduation.
The exceptions are Train Advanced Trainers and Trainer’s Conference where non-students and students from fields other than psychology can apply; and EFPSA Academy which is also open to students from any field.
The Ethics Committee is a regulatory body within EFPSA with the obligation to respond to concerns that arise relating to the Federation and its activities. They may respond to concerns raised by any entity that contacts them; but may also be contacted by the Board of Management, who request their assistance in consideration of some matter. Ultimately the Ethics Committee exists to consider concerning matters impartially, to decide if an action or matter is in violation of the principles of EFPSA, and to provide advice or decisions wherever necessary.
Should an incident occur which you wish to report back to the organisation through discreet channels, the EFPSA Ethics Committee exists to deal with such issues. All communication received by the Ethics Committee will be handled with discretion. The Ethics Committee can be contacted at email@example.com.
If your question was not in the above set of queries, or if you require further clarification on a certain issue, please send your emails to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will get back to you within 72 hours.